The Expert Tips & Advice is an interview series with local wedding professionals. We talk about trends, ideas and advice to make wedding planning easier for the couple.
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When planning a wedding, you always wish you had more time: researching vendors, planning Pinterest-worthy decor, and creating the wedding schedule seems to fill more hours than you have available. Heck, even finding time to just cook a healthy meal is difficult. With help from Nichole Bushong, of Memories Maid, you’ll get it all done and have more time back in your day.
Advice For The Wedding Couple
When trying to decide where to focus your wedding planning efforts, Nichole has this five-star advice: “Look at weddings you’ve been to in the past and think about what you remember most?” says Nichole. “Is it the centerpieces or how the dance was. Was the couple or family stressed out about details? What you remember most is what you should focus on with your own wedding planning and spend your money there.”
Be organized and think of all the elements that go into the big day. Many couples forget to take care of the extra, little details that don’t directly affect the wedding itself. Nicole likes to make sure that the little things don’t turn into big things, such as reminding the bride and groom to insure the wedding rings or to think about who will let the dog out on the wedding day.
When details and organizing your time are starting to stress you out, consider using the services of an event planner, like Nichole. “The bride can’t be everywhere at once. If the only time they can get into the reception site to decorate is when the bride needs to be getting her hair done for photographs, I can help save the day.” She offers event planning services from the beginning stages, only “day of” coordination or even just decorating the reception.
While a lot of brides like to do their own planning, Nichole enjoys the “day of” coordinating to help brides and grooms have a smooth wedding day. A “day of” coordinator takes care of little details that the couple might not have thought about or will be too busy to stress about on the day of the wedding.
“I don’t want them to worry about details like the bathroom getting restocked with toilet paper or where the cards are going at the end of the night.” Having an experienced person help plan the schedule in advance and be the go-to person to handle any snags that might come up in the day will allow the bride and groom–and their families–to really enjoy the experience of the wedding day.
Nichole’s gift shop, Memories Maid, in Grinnell, Iowa also offers pre-made Freezer Pleaser “freezer meals” from her commercial kitchen. Her shop sells local-made gifts, like the greeting cards that are made especially for her retail gift shop. Memories Maid has great for gifts for the wedding party, such as clutches and signs. She also carries unique bridal shower gifts, from mugs to personalized cutting boards to her personalized meal plans and Fireside wines. Her storefront is the perfect location for bridal showers, too, where they can do fun “Wine and Canvas” or meal preparation parties.
When busy wedding planning schedules keep you too busy to cook, pre-made meals are a great solution. Nichole offers healthy, ready-to-bake freezer meals, using local meats and easy to follow directions, available from her gift shop or even delivered to your home with a meal subscription. All ingredients are listed and she is happy to take requests with dietary concerns, such as low sodium and low gluten options. Combine an easy dinner with a bottle of Fireside wine and you have a instant relaxing date night at home!
DIY verses leaving it to the professional:
Prepping meals in advance can save you time later, but does take time–and work– to organize. “With the trip to the grocery store, preparing the vegetables, browning the meat, packaging, labeling and including cooking directions and then all the cleanup, having a professional do it for you saves you hours of time,” says Nichole. Her most popular meal is chicken pot pie, but she offers breakfast, lunch and dinners made with chicken, beef, ham, sausage, and even vegetarian.
A’s to my Q’s: Nichole says…
You should never get married without: trust.
To have an unforgettable wedding, sometimes you have to: let loose.
Electric Slide, Chicken Dance or watching from the bar? Watching from the bar.